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Candy Companies--Including Those that Have Moved Operations Out of the U.S.--Are Still Enjoying Healthy Sales


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(OPEN):
RECESSION OR NOT, PEOPLE ARE STILL EATING SWEET TREATS.  AND, THAT MEANS BIG BUSINESS FOR CANDY COMPANIES--PARTICULARLY THE FEW THAT HAVE CLOSED U-S OPERATIONS IN ORDER TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF CHEAPER LABOR IN MEXICO, CANADA, THAILAND, AND CHINA.  FORMER U-S-D-A OFFICIAL, PETER BUZZANELL, HAS SPENT YEARS EXAMINING CANDY-COMPANY FLIGHT--AND IS RELEASING A NEW STUDY, THIS WEEK, AT THE 26TH "INTERNATIONAL SWEETENER SYMPOSIUM"AMERICAN SUGAR ALLIANCE ECONOMIST, JACK RONEY [AS IN "TONY"], DISCUSSES ITS FINDINGS...

(RONEY):
"A WELL-KNOWN CANDY COMPANY BASED IN PENNSYLVANIA, FOR EXAMPLE, WAS SPENDING NEARLY 19 DOLLARS, AN HOUR, ON ITS WORKERS.  IN MEXICO, THAT FELL TO 51 CENTS, AN HOUR.  THE COMPANY IS ALSO EXPERIENCING HEALTH-CARE EXPENSES THAT HAVE DROPPED BY 97-PERCENT, BY MOVING TO MEXICO.  AND, THEY'RE SAVING ON BUILDING RENTS, AS WELL.  THE ONE VARIABLE THAT HASN'T CHANGED, SOUTH OF THE BORDER, IS THE COST OF RAW INGREDIENTS LIKE SUGAR.
"

(CLOSE):
RONEY ADDS THAT THE COMPANY IN QUESTION HASN'T LOWERED ITS PRICES AT THE GROCERY STORE--AND HAS REPORTED A 20-PERCENT PROFIT INCREASE, FOR THE FIRST QUARTER OF 2009.  THE BUZZANELL STUDY ALSO NOTES THAT--DESPITE THE COMPANY'S PROFITS--FEWER U-S CANDY MANUFACTURERS APPEAR TO BE FLEEING AMERICA.

For soundbites from many of those participating in the 26th International Sweetener Symposium, click here.



Copyright 2009 North American Network, Inc.

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